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Posts posted by Gansangriff

  1. Congratulations Dietmar. You made it to the news.

    "How to run Windows XP on an i486" (German)

    Now you will be famous.
  2. What about using standard Microsoft Word for writing a diary? Word 97 for example.
    Just needs some tuning for PDF export. Namely CutePDF by Acro Software, version 2.8 on my Windows 98 system.
  3. Big recommendation for Teamspeak 2, if it's for voice chat between Windows PCs of all ages. Despite being super old, Teamspeak 2 works even on Windows 10, as well as good old Windows 98. The system requirements are ridiculously low. The codecs are ridiculously outdated (some of them convert your voice to mysterious art!), but they're efficent. Still many public servers are up and running and self-hosting is possible as well. What a nice software.

    Teamspeak 2 Download:

  4. Retrozilla displays the site forum.aviaskins.com fine here on my Windows 98 machine.

    Maybe there are some language packs missing on your Windows 95 installation. Well, I don't know the path on Windows 95, but on Windows 98, you can go to the Control Panel -> Software -> Windows Setup. There is a list of optional packages that come on the original Windows CD. I have a category there for foreign language support. Maybe installing that helps?

  5. @UCyborg: For Armagetron, it's different. The developers don't test it specifically on old computers. Armagetron is rather old in its codebase and is based on an old version of SDL. There is a plan to upgrade things, but hopefully the main developer will be as slow as ever!

    You probably have to tune down the graphics on a Pentium 3 to make it look fluent, but firstly: Armagetron has lots of options in the graphics menu and secondly: In such a low-poly game, there is not much lost.
    100 FPS on the P3 is possible!


  6. Most programs work in any way, regardless of having a Windows 98 First Edition, Second Edition or 98lite- or KernelEx-enhanced version. If OS version dependant problems occur for one chap running FE and the other running SE-KernelEx, it will be little effort to look for the actual version being in use.

    I felt the "vanilla" in the thread title had the nice taste of vanilla ice cream on the tongue. Although Win98 tastes either way well, the basic 1998 version and the patched "current" version. Anyways, this thread was good so far for bringing together the 10 people of around the world that use this obsolete technology and want to write/ask things about it. Surely the 10 could be split up into 4 98SE-vanillas, 2 FE-robusts, 2 98patch-Hightechies and 2 98-BETA-stoneagers...

    Cross-talk between these groups probably was helpful!

  7. My hands are falling off only, when I have to do boring things on my computer. But else, I don't need any good keyboard and continue with old, scrappy keyboards, even a 10 hour programming session. Just the Ctrl key was annoyingly stuck and I've regreased it like a bicycle. Now the keystrokes flow again.

    With a Windows 98 machine, there is not much to complain about. It just works perfectly reliable. Well, except for the occasional hang-ups that Windows 98 has, but restarting always helps. At least since 22 years...

    I think the difference between 98 and 98SE is small. Most programs and hardware runs on both, if it supports one of the two.

    Here, I wanted to show you this: A currently working Windows 98 online game. Armagetron! (https://www.armagetronad.org/) Free Software. Competitive Snake. Very raw game. Left, right, brake, look around, that's all. Pure skill (and lag perception). To become good at this game against other human players, you probably need serious autism! Works on a Pentium 2.
    If you like to have a look at Armagetron, this video shows it well:

    Quote Wunderbar98:
    i resemble that (grumpy old dinosaur). Why not, there's lots to be grumpy about. Anyone who used good old hardware and software back in the day can see where things have led.

    Ah, relatable attitude. Will go extinct, but at least we pointed the finger at bad changes and were right. Sigh, probably the old machines will be the best option to do computing stuff in the next years, too. If you play with me Armagetron, we'll form a group called the "Windows 98 Dinosaurs" and shock all these Discord kids with proper technology, haha!

  8. This is awfully confusing. Although modem / router / switch are different things, their words are often used wrongly. Maybe check this site for more information: https://www.cables-solutions.com/switch-vs-router-vs-modem-difference.html

    So Hotwire is your internet provider? You have to ask them, if you are allowed to use your own router. It depends on the laws in your country.

    If your router is missing the option for Wifi, then you could connect a
    simple Access Point to your router. They are very cheap.

    Also, think about using a very long LAN cable.

  9. Yahoo Mail is a funny case. If you throw half of the site in the bin, you can actually access the mail without any layout styling at all in your Windows 98 webbrowser (for example Netscape, looking perfectly naked (see the image in the attachments). A textbrowser would probably load the site too.

    Hosts file entries will kill connections to the listed sites (look at C:\Windows\hosts):    ads.yahoo.com    geo.yahoo.com    yahoo.ivwbox.de    csc.beap.bc.yahoo.com    beap-bc.yahoo.com    geo.yahoo.com    y.analytics.yahoo.com    ad.yieldmanager.com    ivwbox.de    yui.yahooapis.com    ir2.beap.gemini.yahoo.com    eu-central-1.onemobile.yahoo.com
    (I probably missed some servers, that need to be blocked.)

    I've some old trash account there, when phone verification didn't exist. It keeps asking for a phone number since 10 years or so, but that can be skipped and access was always possible without phone number.

    Actually, this Seamonkey-Retrozilla has a very good mail client onboard, that supports some newer ciphers. You can start it with "retrozilla.exe -mail" (use the command line or create a starter for this). Version 2.2 works for my Posteo account on an ancient Windows 98 machine.

    However with that password loop that you're getting, it seems that your settings (outgoing mail and incoming mail need to be configured seperately) are wrong. Although your provider could be an a** too and have shut the option for unencrypted, SSL3, TLS1.0, TLS1.1... hope you get at least TLS1.2!
    Play around with the ports too. Although setting it to what your mail providers says in the documentation, should do the job. However in some cases, there is more than one port possible.


  10. A decision is a decision, even if it comes out of nowhere. Last words... ehm, occasionally I did behave like an angry goose storming into battle. But everyone threatened stood his ground and so there were plenty of interesting discussions. Congratulations and thank you to all of you for sharing lots of knowledge here on MSFN! But which forum will be the centre of discussions about running old computers now? Vogons.org? Maybe board.eclipse.cx?

  11. There are definetly smaller desktops missing in discounters, that sometimes offer computers. A small desktop, maybe even with passive cooling, would be more than enough what most people ever need.

    I remember very well these discussions in my last school year in 2011, that desktops will be the dinosaurs soon, they are too large, too complicated to set up, too many cables, not beautiful enough, impractical basically.

    Unfortuneatly some people have experienced the computer as frustrating, clicked on the wrong website once, next virus blows the system up. Too complicated, too many possible errors. A walled garden with these Appstores on the smartphones (on Linux too), that's more restrictive, "but at least I can't do anything wrong". That's what easy users prefer, so the desktop was on the decline on the mass-market.

    I know some people, who just use their devices for communicating via Whatsapp and Mail (short messages), videos are played over the smart TV. No PC required anymore. Writing surely is not as precise as on a keyboard, but for short messages, people seem to suffer past it. And the large keyboard (looking disastoursly complex, over 100 keys, only one short step away from the stoneage typewrites) can't rest on my lap while I'm doing yoga poses in front of my TV!
    And now the killer argument: I can't decide to turn on the computer! It feels like such a big task! Whereas the smartphone is always on. That's easier to check. Dammed, how lazy can people be, to be too lazy to turn on the computer!
    And if mobile games are enough (or gaming consoles)... well then, the PC truely lost its purpouse in some homes. Let's say, it happens, even for younger people here. Not everyone wants to build things with technology or to learn deeper things, we always have to consider that.

    The PC will be only dead, if an atomic bomb explodes and all electrics will be cut. Else, it's a device far too universal and useful to become extinct.

  12. If it's a hardware failure, you could also try and boot up another OS. I'd use a Puppy Linux Live CD. If there is no sound on startup ("woof woof"), the speakers are probably broken. Unless something is disabled in the BIOS settings... did you have a look there?

    Did you work with Live CDs already? Feel free to ask.

  13. What kind of computer do you have? A laptop? A desktop with in-built speakers? Where would the audio come out normally?

    Have a look at the control panel under "Sounds and Audio devices" (might be translated differently). Maybe there are different pre-settings for your headphones and your normal audio output. Check if anything is muted accidently. Also try different applications. Maybe it's just a bad setting in the video / audio program that you are using. Do you have no sound at every program?

  14. Keyboard experiences:

    My best keyboard is some cheap stuff, labeled HP SK-2880. Silver and black. That brings one second on a record lap in Grand Prix 2, because the keys are going very softly down, allowing a staccato of hitting the "A" key.

    A keyboard called Fujitsu-Siemens from around 2000 is here, no model information. Originally beige, now yellow. Windows 98 symbols and the euro sign on the "E" and plenty of function keys at the top-right, for example "DOS", "Game", "Suspend" and the button with the coffee cup. That's a standard keyboard however and does not handle more than two keys, if you hit the wrong combinations. Still a good keyboard for typing, and reliable so far.

    I wouldn't be afraid of mechanical keyboards or getting another keyboard in general. Of course it takes some time to get used to it. The IBM Model M (also only 2 KRO) is a tough machine. All keyboards (that are used on top of a table) should be that heavy, that gives them stability. But I don't find it too difficult to get back from the mechanical switch keyboard to a rubber mat keyboard.

  15. All fine.

    Long term analysis? If you give old Windows a chance, you can use your systems until... that hardware becomes so retro that it hurts?

    How many years to estimate... my Windows 98 and Windows XP computers here in operation are reliable despite being 20 years old. Will the current hardware last that long? Some current computers surely will. Anyways, no drama if a computer dies, you build up experience with a certain OS and carry that onto the next hardware. If you're heading for XP and 7, that's affordable for super scrap prices now. And probably in the next 10 years too.

    With that, you could live for a veeeeery long time without needing a change.

    But again, expectations have to be in control. The old stuff doesn't get quicker, but default resolutions of pictures and videos will grow (because people are wasteful with their kilobytes). Maybe you'll have to tweak with the settings of your camera a bit to use it on an old computer.

    Why not use Linux for the tasks only, where it's good at?
    No, @Dixel, please don't get angry now, because there are at least some tasks where Linux is superior to the old Windows, like current web browsing, the powerful command line and virus protection for example.

    Options! Options! Options! We need options on the table!

    4 computers here around the working desk. One to the left, one to the right, one below the table board and one netbook on top of the table. A multi-boot and multi-core (7 cores in total) setup. But I prefer connecting the desktops all to one screen with a KVM switch, also to have one keyboard and mouse lying on the table.

    Tonny, you are asking the right critical questions about the way, that computers have developed. Congratulations. (I wish I was that far with 15...)

  16. @Tonny: Do you have a necktie nearby? Anyways, let's talk business. If you learn to tinker with Linux, with all the troubles you'll encounter, that's one step in the door of the IT industry. Probably a good place to be at the moment (moneywise, if that's a concern). So the troubles with Linux will pay off, I think.

    Give Linux a second thought. New Windows versions won't go in the direction that you like. This comapany would rape you if it brings them money. So to have some options on the table is not the worst thing.

    Why the old Windows OS? Always a combination with the hardware that is in use. You can get old computers for free, but of course they are underpowered for a current Windows. Why Windows then at all if Linux is the holy grail? Some programs are better on Windows. I prefer the old PhotoImpact against mtPaint and Gimp for example. Dual-boot, get the best from both worlds, and have fun with your computer.

  17. Describe the tasks, that you expect your computer to do well.

    Of course you'll have to shape your expectations somewhat around your OS. Brand new killer game performances on a Windows XP and Linux won't happen.

    Is Windows 7 an option? Where do you bump into walls with that now, in 2021?

  18. Hehee... let's look at a dual-boot system from a more general perspective. Raw competition happens every time you switch on the power button of your computer. Which system is better for one task or another? Windows or Linux? A dual-boot system gives you the power to decide and to take best from both worlds.

    Therefore, on your and my scrappy old computers, LibreOffice does in fact compete against Word 97 about the task of producing texts in a more complex way than just a simple plain text file. Please consider my view as the view of a simple computer user. The programmers internals mean nothing to me, it's the result that counts. I have to operate these programs to achieve stuff.

    Oh, it's always interesting to hear about new features! Tell me some! I was asleep in the last 25 years. What are the brand-new office suites capabale of, that I haven't heard about?

    In the business world, people don't bother with Windows 98 machines anymore. They have faster equipment which is absolutely capable of running the current LibreOffice in a way so that it doesn't need 45 seconds to start. I agree 100% on the topic of LibreOffice being very important, probably one of the most important user-software on Linux. Very good to have them around. A world without LibreOffice? It would look quite dark on Linux when it comes to text production, I'd say...

    The audio player named "Audacious" was mentioned, which is a good example of a fine light-weight program, doing just audio. This thing can compete with Winamp 2.95 on Windows 98. Gorgeous program! Proper operation on my old Pentium 2, even large files, 2 hours long, several hundereds of megabytes being played smoothly with that Audacious.

    @UCyborg: Well, the age of the program doesn't matter that much, to be honest, because we are sitting here, end of 2021, with some of us having (mostly overpowered) old machines on their desks. Every computer has an optimal program to run a certain task. LibreOffice to big? Downgrade to AbiWord. Still too slow? Leafpad... oh GUIs are not available, well Nano then... to give some examples. Or mess around with older versions. What would the Windows chain be? If Word 97 is too much, then go along with Word 6.0 I suppose...
    Which can only be found out by testing. It's a very individual choice, what someone needs. But next I want to hear some features of the new text programms to be amazed of!

    That odd 2004 single-core with Linux Mint, well, that might be too much for it. Of course only a test would show, if you would become happy with the performance. An SSD would be the killer application hardwarewise, speeding up things quite a bit. Unfortuneatly, you're losing some programs that don't get 32-bit versions anymore nowadays. Maximising the RAM shouldn't be too difficult on that computer, as the hardware probably doesn't cost anything.
    For the dual-boot installation, I'd go first with Windows XP, format the disks in a way that some space for Linux is available too. Then install Salix. If the bootloader (LILO in the case of Salix) doesn't recognise one partition, stick a Puppy Linux Live CD in the drive and install the bootloader Grub4Dos, which can repair broken boot configurations. Do you have some hard drives in spare? Luxury would be seperate hard drives for Linux and the Windows partition. Because OS performance degrates the further away from the center of the magnetic plates your system is installed, so it would be unfair to have both OS on the same HDD.
    These disadvantages don't apply for an SSD of course.

    Edit: Lightweight would be the Xfce desktop. Try that one instead of Cinnamon.

  19. Regarding my comment, the LibreOffice developers would show me the finger and tell me to get out of the stone age. Their program is simply not built to run on such old computers.
    Maybe I'm a stubborn id***, but I don't see any major improvements in Office Suites in the last 25 years, really. PDF exporting since Office 2003 is the most important feature that I use. To be honest, a peek at Word 6.0 (of 1993) for Windows 3.11 "felt" pretty much like sitting in front of Word 97 with round buttons, but I haven't tested that in detail and realised any projects with it.
    So of course LibreOffice has its important place in today's computing, but I have to compare features and performance for working, regardless of whatever age this program is, so I end up with Word 97 as a solution and am always amazed by the amout of power that LibreOffice needs to achieve the same things.

    Sorry, it looks like I measured something different, which was the RAM usage on startup in fact. My mistake!

    To tell you the truth, Word 97 has plenty of flaws. And one has to get used to them, probably find ways around them, and then one can do fantastic projects with the program. Now what would have been, if I as a 4-year-old would have been sat in front if a Linux machine instead of Windows 98? Much likely I would have gotten used to the flaws of the Linux programs instead and worked with them.

    Regarding lightweight browsers for Linux, Midori was a good choice on the Pentium 2, but that was 5 years ago. Unfortuneatly, it was left behind by the newer encryption standards in my distro then. For computers without enough CPU power, w3m might be an option as a capable text-browser. It can be navigated with a mouse and does everything it displays obviously quick.

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